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02-03-2004, 04:12 PM
  #1
Mizral
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Mizral's trade proposals

Salostyle did some, so I thought I would.

Let me preface this by saying that some of you may be a little surprised that I think guys can garner so little. Many of the trades I am proposing here are to cup-contending teams, and those teams rarely want to move good roster players away at a time like this, which makes sense. I am mostly focusing on picking up prospects, picks, and guys who will be ready to play next season, but are not highly thought of (yet?). Mostly because these are the kinds of deals that are going to happen. You won't see guys like Martin Havlat or Jason Spezza coming to Edmonton.

Anyhow, without further adieu,

Proposal #1:

To New Jersey : Jason Smith ($2.3 million)

To Edmonton : Ari Ahonen (not sure, can't be much)

Some of you may have heard me proposing this elsewhere, but I think the proposal is a slam dunk. Each team addresses a need.

The Devils address a need for a tough defenseman to fill in for Scott Stevens when he's injured, and also to bolster the depth of the blueline after Stevens & Rafalski. Smith is very well a 'devils type' of player, and gives them more power on the blueline, and another voice in the room. Fits right in with the system.

Some of you might not know who Ari Ahonen is. Ahonen is a Finnish goaltender drafted in the 1st round, #27 overall in the 1999 draft - but his stock has only risen from there. He is 23 (actually, he will be on Feb. 6th), and has been the #1 goaltender for the Albany River Rats of the AHL for the last 3 years, in which he has posted pretty good numbers under the circumstances. He projects to be a franchise goaltender, something the Oilers have not really had since Tommy Salo was good, or before that.. uhh.. probobly harken back to the early 90's. Anyhow, he's got big-game potential, and maybe one day could win the Vezina trophy. You might be asking: If he's so good, why would the Devils trade him? Well, two reasons. #1, Brodeur isn't going anywhere, and since Brodeur plays so many games, they only need a backup to play 5 - 7 games a year, and Cory Schwab has done that well for minimal cost, and #2, next year, Ahonen will be 23 and on his second pro-contract, which means he must be placed on the waiver draft. The Devils risk losing him for nothing. Obviously between now and then, he will either be moved, or used as their backup goaltender. Now since they don't need a guy of his talent as a backup, they may be more inclined to move him. Lots of teams out there would want him, but for a guy like Smith, I think the price is right, and Lou would accept.

Proposal #2:

To Buffalo Sabres: Jesse Niinimaki or Marc-Antoine Pouliot (not sure)

To Edmonton Oilers: Jay McKee ($1.7 million)

I feel Edmonton can stand to move one of their top two prospects at centre. Why?

Well, first off, you look down the middle right now, and you've got York, whom is a keeper for sure, Stoll, another big-time keeper, and that leaves a hole at the 2nd centre spot, and the 3rd or 4th (depending on which one Stoll plays). Now, I personally do not know if I want to see one of those skilled guys playing a role that a plugger or a guy like Reasoner could play. May as well keep one of Horcoff and Reasoner to play the 3rd/4th line centre, use Niinimaki or Pouliot to play the 2nd line C spot down the road, and deal off the other one.

The Sabres have had troubles with McKee this season. First off, he was a struggle to sign to a contract. Oiler fans will cringe here, but the situation had more to do with the Sabres organization & coach than it did finances. Mckee is 26 years old, has played 29 games, has 1 assist, no goals, and is a -1. Ouch is right. But he also has played a LOT better. Time for a change of scenery for Jay, and Edmonton is a perfect scenario. McKee could play a top 4 defensive role, and be part of a young core with Brewer, Semenov, and hopefully Woywitka soon too. I think at the very least, Mckee is a fine #4 defenseman who can clear the crease. At best, he's a good #3. This is the kind of gamble I wish Kevin Lowe took more often!

The Sabres could use more prospects at forward. Vanek, Paille, Roy, and Pominville are nice, but none but Roy are centres.

Proposal #3:

To Atlanta Thrashers : Jason Smith ($2.3 million)

To Edmonton Oilers : Patrick Stefan ($1.15 million)

Atlanta has been asking for a top 3 defenseman in rumours lately, in order to push for a Stanley Cup. Smith embodies that, and can play the shutdown role which the Thrashers desperatly need. With Coburn coming in next year, Smith would be a fine tutor for the young defenseman as well.

Stefan has falen on hard times, and this is his last chance with the Thrashers. A change of scenery could do him well. At the very least, Stefan is a 3rd line centre with a decent two-way game. But he could potentially be more. Much more. I think it'd be a decent chance to take here.


Last edited by Mizral: 02-03-2004 at 04:17 PM.
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Old
02-03-2004, 04:22 PM
  #2
Cerebral
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All interesting ideas.. I'd personally have a big problem with dealing Smith for Ahonen or Stefan. It would be next to impossible for K-Lowe to justify moving our captain and arguably best defenceman this season for an unproven player in Ahonen or Stefan. I personally think that Patrik Stefan could be had for a lot cheaper than Jason Smith.. likewise, where would he fit in our lineup? I've watched him play quite a few games this year and he is playing no better than Stoll or Horcoff which plants him firmly on the third/fourth line.. I definitely don't want to trade away our top d-man this season for another third/fourth liner, something we already have an abundance of. Ahonen would be interesting but I think it would need to be a bigger deal with us getting back one of their stud defensive prospects as well..

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02-03-2004, 04:41 PM
  #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mizral
Proposal #1:

To New Jersey : Jason Smith ($2.3 million)

To Edmonton : Ari Ahonen (not sure, can't be much)
Based on if your assessment of Ahonen is accurate, I would probably do this deal.

Obviously you have to give quality to get quality back. However since Smith has come back from injury he seems to have stepped up his leadership by example role. For the 3 games he has played since being injured has really brought the physical presence with intent to spark the team.

I would do the deal but I must admit that I would be a little concerned about leadership on the team.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mizral
Proposal #2:

To Buffalo Sabres: Jesse Niinimaki or Marc-Antoine Pouliot (not sure)

To Edmonton Oilers: Jay McKee ($1.7 million)
I pass on this deal. I think Edmonton can afford to move a defenceman without replacing him. In a sense Lowe has already replaced whom ever he may ship out by bringing in Ulanov.

I think next year both Woywitka and Lynch can be brought in. From what I have seen some Flyer fans say, Woywitka was good enough to play this year but Pitkanen really stepped up and offered an offensive dimension that ended up causing Woywitka his spot.

If defence is proven to be a problem then I say Lowe should address it at the time. I don't think he would need to be proactive in it though.

Alsoif there is a lock out, it just prepares both Lynch and Woywitka all the more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mizral
Proposal #3:

To Atlanta Thrashers : Jason Smith ($2.3 million)

To Edmonton Oilers : Patrick Stefan ($1.15 million)
I pass on this one also.

I don't mind Stefan but I see him more as a 3rd liner than a 2nd and the Oilers have had far too many of those over the past few years.

I also think that Smith is an attractive commodity and as such Lowe should probably be able to garner more if he is trading him (more meaning more than a 3rd line center).

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02-03-2004, 04:42 PM
  #4
Mr Sakich
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trade 1 - Smith for Ari

I like it. If Ari is as good as advertised, then the deal works. His numbers are not great but the oilers need a stud goalie. I think this is their biggest need. It may be over-paying for a guy with poor AHL numbers but Lou doesn't make too many bad deals. This is a swing for the fence deal as you never know how well an ahl goalie will do but we absolutlely need to find a stud goalie so I think it is worth a chance.

trade 2 - Jesse Niinimaki or Marc-Antoine Pouliot (not sure) for Jay McKee ($1.7 million)

Lowe likes Mckee and even invited him to the Team Canada camp as insurance in case Adam Foote went down. This would be a typical Lowe trade where he sells high and buys low. Right now, McKee is coming off two years of injuries. It is risky. I am really not crazy about trading one of two guys who could be an answer to our hole at centre . I would rather see a Rita or Brodziak deal instead.

trade 3 - smith for stafan

I used to be a stefan fan until I watched a few games this year. The closest comparable I can think of is Horcoff. This is a sideways move at best and does nothing to help us in the future. Patrik is too frail to be counted on as a number one centre and we have York, Reasoner, and Stoll for our 2-4 slots. I hope that Lowe can get a lot more for Smith than Stefan.

I like one and two but don't like the third.

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02-03-2004, 04:48 PM
  #5
Mizral
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copperandblue,

Regarding the McKee move,

Getting McKee is not just to replace Smith. But in that vein, do you really feel that Igor Ulanov has the capability to play in Smith's role next year? He'll be 34 years of age next season, and the fire he's playing with right now can't last forever.

Mckee would also represent part of the future core of a blueline. I am personally of the belief that all great teams start with a great young blueline. Right now, the Oilers have a very, very shoddy blueline that could be called one of the worst in the West. Mckee doesn't help the offensive in that regard, but he certainly helps the defense. I would feel very comfortable with Brewer, McKee, and Woywitka down my left side starting this coming year.

As for Lynch, I do not believe he will be ready. Just my opinion.

But even if he is, do you really want to play two rookie defenseman at the same time? That's very dangerous. Playing rookies is one thing, but relying upon them is entirely another. The Oilers cannot expect to make the playoffs next year with too many rookies.

It seems the only veteran defensemen next year are going to be Staios, Ulanov, and to a lesser extent, Brewer. I don't think that's enough, especially with the questionable play of Ulanov over the years. You're gonna need at least one more veteran defenseman, preferably two, to make the playoffs.

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02-03-2004, 04:51 PM
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Sakich
I like it. If Ari is as good as advertised, then the deal works. His numbers are not great but the oilers need a stud goalie. I think this is their biggest need. It may be over-paying for a guy with poor AHL numbers but Lou doesn't make too many bad deals.
There's a perfectly good explanation for that. The River Rats, well, suck...

I've wanted Ahonen/Garon for a long time now. Even before Mizral I think. So I would be all for trading for Ari even if we had to throw in a pick with Jason Smith.

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02-03-2004, 05:09 PM
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mizral
copperandblue,

Right now, the Oilers have a very, very shoddy blueline that could be called one of the worst in the West.
TSN thinks we have two guys ( smith and Staios) in the top 20 of the NHL. Brewer has been to an all-star games and was the leading scorer amongst canadian dmen in the olympics. Semenov is headed to the Young Stars game and Bergeron was origianlly invited to that game. Cross is one of the steadiest guys in the league over the last 5 years.

I actually don't mind our defense. I just wish smith would sign a long term deal. The problem with our defense this year is that every time they make a mistake, it has ended up in our net. Hasek and Roy made a lot of average dmen look real good. Red-light Racicot ended a few careers.

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02-03-2004, 05:09 PM
  #8
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I don't really like to comment on trade speculation but why exactly do we move one of our first round picks for a D-man that has 10 career goals? Don't we have enough 6'3, offensively challenged, Lowe clones on defense? D-minded, immobile D-men can be found on the cheap pretty easily (Staios, Cross, Ulanov, Feguson). We need SKILLED d-men! Guys who can move the puck, shoot a howitzer (that hits the mark) on the PP, make a decent cross ice pass. No Jay McKee's please.

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02-03-2004, 05:11 PM
  #9
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Call me a homer or what ever but I don't mind the look of the defence next year even without Smith (actually until Staios was signed to the extension I was of the thought that 1 of the two would be moving).

In no particular order;

Brewer, Staios, Semenov, Ulanov, Cross, Ferguson, Woywitka, Lynch, Bergeron

That's 9 guys within the organization for the blue line. I don't hold the highest regard for Cross or Ferguson but in the sense of depth they are fine and I see Bergeron as likely back in T.O.

I would like to keep Ulanov if for no other reason then he has been a very very good tutor for Semenov. One more year of the two together is not a bad idea in my opinion. Also I don't see Ulanov playing the same way that he was when he became a liability his last time through town. He is much more composed and seems to be thinking the game better.

As young as Brewer is, he will be a 7 yr pro and I think he can handle playing with a rookie.

I also can see Staios as being able to mentor a rookie.

Maybe Lynch is a 40 - 50 game rookie only but by all accounts he has done a tremendous job in Toronto on a very poor team. If he can't handle 82 games then there is Cross or Ferguson to play some games.

I see a great opportunity for Woywitka and Lynch and although playing 2 rookies may be asking for trouble I think picking up a veteran stay at home defenceman is not too hard these days. I also think it may get even easier with the new CBA when some of these teams are possibly a little more desperate to trim some salary.

Granted I make some assumptions regarding Lynch and Woywitka, but that is why I think Lowe should wait and see what he is dealing with as opposed to bringing in someone else right away and possibly costing a spot for someone already in the organization.

Don't get me wrong, I don't mind the deal in terms of value vs value, I just don't like the timing of it.

I also think dealing for a center that is ready to play or already in the bigs is a much higher priority.

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02-03-2004, 05:24 PM
  #10
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Jay Mckee would be an awsome acquisition for the oilers defense. all we need is a deal that brings Biron along with him.

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02-03-2004, 05:29 PM
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mizral
Playing rookies is one thing, but relying upon them is entirely another. The Oilers cannot expect to make the playoffs next year with too many rookies.
Just a question, but doesn't this flyin the face of your logic with Ahonen? (not critisizing the deal, just asking the question)

I mean if you don't want too many rookies in fear that their typical rookie mistakes and struggles could cost you the playoffs why aquire one to play in the most important position.

At least in terms of defencemen, the minutes can take care of minimizing mistakes.

Let's say you ice;

Staios Woywitka
Brewer Lynch
Semenov Ulanov

you have the capability to play Staios and Brewer at 27-28 minutes a night, Semenov and Ulanov are capable of playing 23-24 minutes a night which only leaves 10 minutes to the rookies.

I am not saying that you play those 4 at those minutes but they certainly are capable of going stretches with that kind of time. For as much talk as there is about how bad it is to play defencemen at high minutes, it seems to be very common in the league.

And as I mentioned before, you also still have Cross if you want to pull a rookie out of the line up.

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02-03-2004, 05:39 PM
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by copperandblue
you have the capability to play Staios and Brewer at 27-28
That is something I don't want the Oilers to rely upon. Staios simply can't handle those kinds of minutes; he'll wear down awfully fast. That's just too many minutes for those two players. 25 minutes is where I would place Brewer at and around 23 for Staios ideally but we probably need that stretched.

If we place them at 27 minutes consistently, we are going to be in trouble due to fatigue.

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02-03-2004, 05:52 PM
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by momentai
That is something I don't want the Oilers to rely upon. Staios simply can't handle those kinds of minutes; he'll wear down awfully fast. That's just too many minutes for those two players. 25 minutes is where I would place Brewer at and around 23 for Staios ideally but we probably need that stretched.

If we place them at 27 minutes consistently, we are going to be in trouble due to fatigue.
Yeah actually I stand corrected, I just checked the average ice time for defencemen and 23 or 24 for those guys is more realistic.

BUT, it still doesn't change that at the very least, with Cross still on the team for a year or so, the Oilers still have the ability to only ice one rookie defenceman at a time if they choose to.

You can't keep these rookies out of the line up in fear that they will make mistakes or else what's the point of aquiring them.

You play them knowing they will make mistakes but at the same time gaining the experience needed to take the next step in say 2 years as opposed to taking the next step in 3 years becasue they spent an extra year in the minors.

This is a process, when Lowe talks about the team being built for post CBA I take that to mean that the team is still going to be spending a couple years gaining momentum. The building part is only assembling most of the pieces, it doesn't include the experience that those pieces need to become a contending team.

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02-03-2004, 05:54 PM
  #14
Mizral
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Quote:
Originally Posted by copperandblue
Just a question, but doesn't this flyin the face of your logic with Ahonen? (not critisizing the deal, just asking the question)

I mean if you don't want too many rookies in fear that their typical rookie mistakes and struggles could cost you the playoffs why aquire one to play in the most important position.

At least in terms of defencemen, the minutes can take care of minimizing mistakes.

Let's say you ice;

Staios Woywitka
Brewer Lynch
Semenov Ulanov

you have the capability to play Staios and Brewer at 27-28 minutes a night, Semenov and Ulanov are capable of playing 23-24 minutes a night which only leaves 10 minutes to the rookies.

I am not saying that you play those 4 at those minutes but they certainly are capable of going stretches with that kind of time. For as much talk as there is about how bad it is to play defencemen at high minutes, it seems to be very common in the league.

And as I mentioned before, you also still have Cross if you want to pull a rookie out of the line up.
I don't mind so much playing Ahonen because he's played pro for so long (4 or 5 years of mens leagues or so). Lynch has played, by my count, a little over half a season in a mens league. Woywitka's first year in the A too. Technically, Ahonen is still a rookie. But he's also 23 compared to 20 year olds, and playing in the pro leagues for so long, he ought to be more mature.

I think the question is this: Are you guys happy with having two of Semenov & one of Ulanov, Cross, or Bergeron in the top 4 defense again next year? Personally, I've seen enough of Ferguson on the bottom pairing to last me a lifetime. I think it's time to take a step up defensivly, even if it means sacrificing a bit of the long-term future for some hear & now (and short term). This doesn't mean go get soon-to-be-retired Eric Weinrich, but a guy like McKee does solve things.

By the way, while McKee doesn't score a lot, I do think he will be a lot more reliable than a guy like Cross. How many more blown coverages or giveaways, or bad clearing attemps are we willing to put up with? As it stands, the D is going to get worse next year, not better, and that's really, really not good.

I also think it'd be pretty surprising to see Lynch up ahead of Bergeron. I have a feeling Bergeron will be a regular next year. Idealy, I'd like to see the lineup like this:

Brewer/Semenov (that pairing worked well two seasons ago)
McKee/Bergeron
Woywitka/Staios

You've got three really young guys, and 3 veterans (I will consider Brewer to be a veteran after this season, he's played a TON of games for his age). Then if you've got injuries, a guy like Lynch or Ferguson could step up and play 20/30 games if need be.

Doesn't that look a lot better than having Cross or Ferguson in there? I think that defense, while not perfect either, is much closer to what you want to get.

Also of note for you youth freaks, only one guy there is over 30 years of age.

The best part about a D like this, is you aren't overworking guys. Brewer, Mckee, and Staios are all capable of logging 20+ minutes a night, Semenov could log 16 - 18, Woywitka and Bergeron 12 - 16. Having Brewer and Staios out there for 30 minutes a night, I personally feel, leads to injuries and fatigue.

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02-03-2004, 05:59 PM
  #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by copperandblue
Call me a homer or what ever but I don't mind the look of the defence next year even without Smith (actually until Staios was signed to the extension I was of the thought that 1 of the two would be moving).

In no particular order;

Brewer, Staios, Semenov, Ulanov, Cross, Ferguson, Woywitka, Lynch, Bergeron

That's 9 guys within the organization for the blue line. I don't hold the highest regard for Cross or Ferguson but in the sense of depth they are fine and I see Bergeron as likely back in T.O.

I would like to keep Ulanov if for no other reason then he has been a very very good tutor for Semenov. One more year of the two together is not a bad idea in my opinion. Also I don't see Ulanov playing the same way that he was when he became a liability his last time through town. He is much more composed and seems to be thinking the game better.

As young as Brewer is, he will be a 7 yr pro and I think he can handle playing with a rookie.

I also can see Staios as being able to mentor a rookie.

Maybe Lynch is a 40 - 50 game rookie only but by all accounts he has done a tremendous job in Toronto on a very poor team. If he can't handle 82 games then there is Cross or Ferguson to play some games.

I see a great opportunity for Woywitka and Lynch and although playing 2 rookies may be asking for trouble I think picking up a veteran stay at home defenceman is not too hard these days. I also think it may get even easier with the new CBA when some of these teams are possibly a little more desperate to trim some salary.

Granted I make some assumptions regarding Lynch and Woywitka, but that is why I think Lowe should wait and see what he is dealing with as opposed to bringing in someone else right away and possibly costing a spot for someone already in the organization.

Don't get me wrong, I don't mind the deal in terms of value vs value, I just don't like the timing of it.

I also think dealing for a center that is ready to play or already in the bigs is a much higher priority.
With all due respect our defense is not good. All of our resources (money) and talent should be on the back-end and in goal. Unfortunetly its not. Staois is maybe, maybe a 4th defenseman on some teams, on a cup contender he's a fifth. Cross, Ferguson and Ulanov are all 5th and 6th, dependable minute eaters at best. Brewer is a highly talented man but he's no better than a 2nd d-man (I'm not insulting him I think he's our most valuable commodity). Semenov might be a top four someday but at this time he's not. You can't build a team by finding your 4-5-6 D-men first. You can always find the Cory Crosses of the league at the deadline. Look at the past decade of cup winners.
95 Devils - Niedermayer, Stevens, Driver, Daneyko
96 Avalanche - Ozolnish, Foote, Gusarov, Lefebrve
97 Wings - Lidstrom, Murphy, Konstantinov, Larionov
98 Wings - Lidstrom, Murphy,Larionov, Mironov/Macoun
99 Stars - Hatcher, Sydor, Zubov, Matvichuk
00 Devils - Niedermayer, Stevens, White, Rafalski
01 Avalanche - Bourque, Blake, Skoula, Foote
02 Wings - Lidstrom, Chelios, Duchesne, Fischer
03 Devils - Niedermayer, Stevens, White, Rafalski

With the exception of the 96 Avalanche they all have stud, star defenseman
The Devils forwards came and went, the Wings won with three different goalies. We need to find a star defenseman and we need to spend the majority of our payroll on Defense and goal.

We can enjoy Raffi Torres and Isbister all we want but will they ever make up for the fact we lost a dependable, hard working, talented d-man who wanted to be here. In my estimation no. And yeah Poti was being ran out of town and was struggling and Mike York is a fantastic player but have we ever really replaced Poti's speed on the back end? That's why I think the Comrie trade has the potential to be a huge steal for us. The problem is Lynch and Wowitka are probally 5 years away from being effective NHL blueliners.

I think this organization need two make two distinct philosophy changes;
1. Never, never ,ever trade a good D-man for a forward. You can trade all of our forwards right now as far as I'm concered as long as you get a potential stud D-man in return. Hemsky, I'd trade him for a Hamhuis or a Boyton in a second. Smyth, as long as somebody like Jackman or Komisarek is coming back.

2. Draft D-men, I don't even want to go throught the list of effective defenseman that were drafted 1-20 picks after we selected some forward who's driving a milk. truck about now. Best player on the board my A**, unless its some dynamic, bue chip , scoring force we need to pick the best defenseman on the board. I'm sorry that Nick Stadjuhar and Descoteux didn't work but keep picking until we have a stockpile of talent on that back end.

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02-03-2004, 06:00 PM
  #16
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But Ahonen is a goalie. A position that traditionally takes longer to develop in so although he has a few years of pro experience he hasn't gone through the NHL learning curve.

As for Cross and Ferguson, I agree, I have seen enough of them as well but my whole point is that trade is not necessary right now (partly because of these two guys as depth players) and can be made later if determined it needs to be.

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02-03-2004, 06:24 PM
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mizral
Salostyle did some, so I thought I would.

Let me preface this by saying that some of you may be a little surprised that I think guys can garner so little. Many of the trades I am proposing here are to cup-contending teams, and those teams rarely want to move good roster players away at a time like this, which makes sense. I am mostly focusing on picking up prospects, picks, and guys who will be ready to play next season, but are not highly thought of (yet?). Mostly because these are the kinds of deals that are going to happen. You won't see guys like Martin Havlat or Jason Spezza coming to Edmonton.

Anyhow, without further adieu,

Proposal #1:

To New Jersey : Jason Smith ($2.3 million)

To Edmonton : Ari Ahonen (not sure, can't be much)

Some of you may have heard me proposing this elsewhere, but I think the proposal is a slam dunk. Each team addresses a need.

The Devils address a need for a tough defenseman to fill in for Scott Stevens when he's injured, and also to bolster the depth of the blueline after Stevens & Rafalski. Smith is very well a 'devils type' of player, and gives them more power on the blueline, and another voice in the room. Fits right in with the system.

Some of you might not know who Ari Ahonen is. Ahonen is a Finnish goaltender drafted in the 1st round, #27 overall in the 1999 draft - but his stock has only risen from there. He is 23 (actually, he will be on Feb. 6th), and has been the #1 goaltender for the Albany River Rats of the AHL for the last 3 years, in which he has posted pretty good numbers under the circumstances. He projects to be a franchise goaltender, something the Oilers have not really had since Tommy Salo was good, or before that.. uhh.. probobly harken back to the early 90's. Anyhow, he's got big-game potential, and maybe one day could win the Vezina trophy. You might be asking: If he's so good, why would the Devils trade him? Well, two reasons. #1, Brodeur isn't going anywhere, and since Brodeur plays so many games, they only need a backup to play 5 - 7 games a year, and Cory Schwab has done that well for minimal cost, and #2, next year, Ahonen will be 23 and on his second pro-contract, which means he must be placed on the waiver draft. The Devils risk losing him for nothing. Obviously between now and then, he will either be moved, or used as their backup goaltender. Now since they don't need a guy of his talent as a backup, they may be more inclined to move him. Lots of teams out there would want him, but for a guy like Smith, I think the price is right, and Lou would accept.

Proposal #2:

To Buffalo Sabres: Jesse Niinimaki or Marc-Antoine Pouliot (not sure)

To Edmonton Oilers: Jay McKee ($1.7 million)

I feel Edmonton can stand to move one of their top two prospects at centre. Why?

Well, first off, you look down the middle right now, and you've got York, whom is a keeper for sure, Stoll, another big-time keeper, and that leaves a hole at the 2nd centre spot, and the 3rd or 4th (depending on which one Stoll plays). Now, I personally do not know if I want to see one of those skilled guys playing a role that a plugger or a guy like Reasoner could play. May as well keep one of Horcoff and Reasoner to play the 3rd/4th line centre, use Niinimaki or Pouliot to play the 2nd line C spot down the road, and deal off the other one.

The Sabres have had troubles with McKee this season. First off, he was a struggle to sign to a contract. Oiler fans will cringe here, but the situation had more to do with the Sabres organization & coach than it did finances. Mckee is 26 years old, has played 29 games, has 1 assist, no goals, and is a -1. Ouch is right. But he also has played a LOT better. Time for a change of scenery for Jay, and Edmonton is a perfect scenario. McKee could play a top 4 defensive role, and be part of a young core with Brewer, Semenov, and hopefully Woywitka soon too. I think at the very least, Mckee is a fine #4 defenseman who can clear the crease. At best, he's a good #3. This is the kind of gamble I wish Kevin Lowe took more often!

The Sabres could use more prospects at forward. Vanek, Paille, Roy, and Pominville are nice, but none but Roy are centres.

Proposal #3:

To Atlanta Thrashers : Jason Smith ($2.3 million)

To Edmonton Oilers : Patrick Stefan ($1.15 million)

Atlanta has been asking for a top 3 defenseman in rumours lately, in order to push for a Stanley Cup. Smith embodies that, and can play the shutdown role which the Thrashers desperatly need. With Coburn coming in next year, Smith would be a fine tutor for the young defenseman as well.

Stefan has falen on hard times, and this is his last chance with the Thrashers. A change of scenery could do him well. At the very least, Stefan is a 3rd line centre with a decent two-way game. But he could potentially be more. Much more. I think it'd be a decent chance to take here.

# 1 is a great idea, 2 and 3 would not be worth it, a defensive centerman can be had any year with a second round pick at the highest. Also you are taking a huge change at this stage of these players development deciding which one is the better player....
JMHO!!

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02-03-2004, 07:19 PM
  #18
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Smith and Chimera to New Jersey for Michael Rupp and Paul Martin.


Cover off the goaltending problem in the off season.

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02-03-2004, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by lowetide
Smith and Chimera to New Jersey for Michael Rupp and Paul Martin.


Cover off the goaltending problem in the off season.
Huge No, Martin is going nowhere and Chimera is no upgrade over Rupp. Martin's value is alot more then Smiths who is a UFA at years end.

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02-03-2004, 07:33 PM
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JasonMacIsaac
..Smiths who is a UFA at years end.
I'm not sure why everyone thinks this... Has the paper ever mentioned Jason Smith being an UFA? Again, Jason is a RFA after this season.

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02-03-2004, 07:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JasonMacIsaac
Huge No, Martin is going nowhere and Chimera is no upgrade over Rupp. Martin's value is alot more then Smiths who is a UFA at years end.
For the last freaking time, Smith is not a UFA at season's end......

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02-03-2004, 09:41 PM
  #22
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Originally Posted by momentai
There's a perfectly good explanation for that. The River Rats, well, suck...

I've wanted Ahonen/Garon for a long time now. Even before Mizral I think. So I would be all for trading for Ari even if we had to throw in a pick with Jason Smith.
I agree with you momentai. Target Garon who is NHL ready now, with a couple of years in the show, and only three years older than Ahonen. If I were to gamble a player like Smith, the return would be Garon.

I like the suggestion to target Jay McKee. Big, tough physical player who has had some injuries and has run afoul of management. I think McKee could flourish in a new environment like Edmonton. However I'm not sure what I would give up for him.

For the Oilers to move Smith, I think it will have to be for NHL player(s) and not picks or prospects. As Boondock notes, Smith is not an UFA so the Oil don't need to trade him if the right deal isn't there. I for one believe Smith commands a very good return if shopped. Big, strong, physical, character, and leadership. These are all very important commodities in trying to build a Cup Champion.

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02-03-2004, 09:45 PM
  #23
hmminvisiblecola1279
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the problem is he may not be an ufa, however he will command a lot of money and would probably win in arbitration. if he cant be signed now then trade him before the trade deadline, at least then the oilers wont be forced to deal him if he wins his case. the team could get more talent for him now rather than waiting until the summer.

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02-03-2004, 10:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by momentai
I'm not sure why everyone thinks this... Has the paper ever mentioned Jason Smith being an UFA? Again, Jason is a RFA after this season.
You think NJ is going to qualify him? No, so that does make him a UFA.

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02-03-2004, 10:48 PM
  #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JasonMacIsaac
You think NJ is going to qualify him? No, so that does make him a UFA.
Why? What exactly makes you so sure that they would not should they acquire him? It would be wholly illogical for Lou not to qualify a dman of Smith's quality and breed. His salary would not be one that is unreasonable for the Devils either. So why would the Devils' GM lose an asset for nothing?

Besides that wasn't your initial response. You believed he was an UFA not I. If the Oilers "possibly" don't qualify Brewer, I'm sure that he's currently going to be an UFA at the end of the year, right?

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